As I’m finding out as a free agent in our complex Healthcare system, Emeryville and the surrounding areas have relatively few options outside of the major networks, forcing me and others I’m sure to neighboring cities in pursuit of care. Years ago, Kaiser unveiled a plan to move their Oakland facility to Emeryville at the site of the former Del Monte/Current Pixar Campus. The proposed project seemed mostly well received by Emeryville residents & leaders. This never happened because of opposition by Oakland city leaders including our current Governor Jerry Brown who resurrected his career as Mayor of Oakland from 1999-2007. Brown, representing his “We the People” Political Action Committee can be viewed in the below EPOA video archive vehemently opposing the plan (1:55) citing it as a “Scandalous treatment of the city of Oakland that gave it birth” and announced his intent to “Fight it every step of the way”.
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Fight it they did and despite $43 million spent in designs & approvals, Brown & the City of Oakland & Berkeley successfully defeated the project through litigation. Kaiser is the largest employer in Oakland (And Apparently #2 employer in Berkeley after UC I’ve been told) and its exodus of jobs and tax revenue would have been a considerable blow to the cities.
It is just now that the new Downtown Oakland Medical Center prepares to open 20 years later. Who know’s what impact this would have ultimately had on our city had they been succesful. From my personal observations, the areas surrounding hospitals are not generally desirable places to live so it’s unlikely the Park Avenue District surrounding it would have progressed into the more residential area it has become.
Two decades later, our tiny but nimble city is still without any healthcare options for adults, but the recent unveiling of the Stanford Children’s Health Specialty Services clinic at one of the many Wareham properties on Horton has given the city its first pediatric facility (at the expense of Children’s Hospital Oakland as EBX suggests). The 14,000-square-foot pediatric clinic opened on September 30 with seventeen part-time doctors (EBX also alleges that Packard recruited some of their doctors away from Children’s Hospital Oakland). They began offering orthopedic services and now also offering specialized services in gastroenterology, cardiology, neurology and nephrology. This seems to be a big step forward in establishing Emeryville’s new “Family Friendly” direction.
Meanwhile, UCSF has recently partnered with Children’s Hospital is making a play for E’ville as well. SF Business Times reporter Blanca Torres is reporting that they recently signed four leases in Emeryville totaling 116,000 sq. ft. These combined leases represent 2.5 percent of the total office space in Emeryville making them one of the largest new office tenants in the East Bay.
- 50,000 square feet in 6425 Christie Ave. with landlord Harvest Properties.
- 25,000 square feet in EmeryTech with landlord Ellis Partners.
- 25,000 square feet in 2100 Powell St. with landlord Hines.
- 16,000 square feet in 2000 Powell St. with landlord LBA Realty.
This move may be a counter to Stanford’s perceived “moving in on our turf” recent East Bay activity. UCSF’s involvement in Emeryville seems to be exclusively administration & research and there are no public services being offered at this time. UCSF also partners with The Ernest Gallo Clinic and Research Center on Horton which studies basic neuroscience and the effects of alcohol on the brain. This “race” appears to be largely driven by the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, which is slashing Medicare reimbursements.
Further Reading & Resources:
UCSF takes big bite out of Emeryville: inks four leases | SF Business Times →.
Lucile Packard invades Children’s Oakland’s turf with new Emeryville clinic | EBX →
Stanford v. UCSF: Clash of the health titans | SF Business Times →